Parents' Guide to


By S. Jhoanna Robledo, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 15+

All-star virus thriller is intense, uncompromising.

Movie PG-13 2011 105 minutes
Contagion Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this movie.

Community Reviews

age 12+

Based on 11 parent reviews

age 13+

I'm okay

I believe people should at least be 13+ to watch this movie, but my younger brother is 10 years old and he LOVES it. It is pretty disturbing. (taking out the brain, etc.) I didn't really enjoy this movie, but everything else that has nothing to do with doctors is alright. FYI, make sure you wash your hands.

This title has:

Too much violence
age 10+


I was told to watch this about 2-4 weeks into COVID19 arriving stateside. My initial reaction was, "No way! Too scary for me." But 6 weeks into it, trying to quaranTEEN a 15 y.o. at home - unsuccessfully I might add - it became mandatory viewing for all of us. It's a good story and well acted. There's a lot of detail to pack into 2 hours, but they do a decent job. The "scariest" part of the movie was how incredibly accurate it is! It came out in 2011, but here we are in 2020 experiencing a pandemic nearly exactly how it played out in the movie. My ~11 y.o. wanted to watch with us. I covered his eyes initially for the autopsy scene. But due to some questions during the movie, we had to re-wind. He insisted he wanted to see it, so I let him. It wasn't really that bad (coming from a doctor...someone who's always been curious about biology and bodily functions, etc.). There's a lot of good teaching points. My kids (15 and ~11) asked a lot of good questions. You have to know what your kids can handle.

This title has:

Great messages
Great role models

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (11):
Kids say (56):

With a stellar cast, a gripping pace, and a subject matter as hard to shake as the virus that spreads through its story, CONTAGION is a winner. (When your first instinct after seeing the movie is to attempt not to touch anything on your way home and to wash your hands thoroughly, you know it hit its marks.) Though some cast members have more camera time than others -- Damon, for instance, who's first rate, and Fishburne, in a meaty, satisfying role -- the film is a masterful ensemble piece in which no one hogs the spotlight.

Given the subject matter, it's surprising how Contagion doesn't unfold like a hospital-based TV drama. Jargon pops up in seemingly organic and very necessary moments; it's explained well, too. Emotional moments are used selectively, grounding the film in humanity without becoming maudlin (or manipulative). An Internet subplot hovers dangerously close to excess, but manages to pull away from the brink. All in all, it's a Soderbergh win.

Movie Details

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